Thrustmaster is the best of the best when it comes to its more commonly known for racing wheels. Legendary collaborations with brands like Ferrari and Sparco along with industry-standard quality hardware is what makes the brand so top tier. While Thrustmaster has made gamepads for a while the new eSwapX Pro controller is by far the leader in technology and innovation making it their Flagship model for Xbox and PC. Right off the bat, you can always tell you have purchased a quality product when the packaging is this nice. In the box you will find a super long proprietary USB cable, custom Philips screwdriver, swapping mini-stick caps, and a carrying bag along with your controller. Thrustmaster has designed this controller to be an Esports competition quality peripheral with an abundant amount of next-level features that are fully customizable priced at $179.99.
As of right now the there is only a wired version of the eSwapX Pro Controller. As you would expect from a Thrustmaster product or any product priced at this tier its quality built. When you hold it in your hand it does not feel like a toy it feels like a well-built machine. I have nothing but compliments on the quality of the design and craftsmanship put into the product. One thing I do not like however is the proprietary USB cable. If lost or damaged you might not be able to get one right away depending on if you’re able to find it sold separately at a store near you. Aside from this minor detail 7 pieces of the controller are fully customizable including the sticks, pad, triggers, and side panels with the T-Mod Hot Swap technology. Not only can you replace a stick or trigger if they wear out, but you can also build it out to your own custom color preference. As of now, I do not see this option, but I would imagine in the near future we will see different weights and sensitivity components for the swappable sticks or triggers. Hot Swap does make the controller a little bulky compared to an Xbox Elite but a necessary sacrifice to achieve this level of customization. Thrustmaster claims you can have up to 5 million activations per component which should last you an entire generation of consoles.
All the components feel so solid starting with the NXG analog mini-sticks. Thrustmaster claims a Switch activation lifespan of +100% which is double of a normal stick. An increased physical resistance of +33% and an increased back-to-center precision of +66%, What does all this mean? It’s ultra-precise and responsive you can hear the click like a high-end gaming mouse. A great feature for the FPS family is the trigger locking mechanism. You can adjust the range of travel on the trigger which allows you to get a custom fit for your playstyle. What really makes this controller for me is the ability to fine-tune the button mapping. It has buttons on the back near the bottom where your ring, and pinky fingers normally rest. These can be tuned to activate any button on the controller using the ThrustmapperX software on Xbox or PC. Literally fine-tune your playstyle into the controller with this software that gives you the ability to adjust sensitivity, dead zones, button map, and vibration levels. Another row of buttons along the bottom has a profile swap so you can customize your settings for each game along with onboard volume/mute control. Seriously no joke, in my opinion, it’s more a matter of what the controller does not do for you.
Sticker shock is most likely the first thing you will have when looking at this product at an online store. At $179.99 for the controller kit then another $49.99 for a custom parts color pack $230 can make a big hole in your pocket. I do not think this controller is for the casuals, it’s built for the people who want to win now. It takes experience to fine-tune the settings to fit the playstyle of the game you want to play. I do not think beginners will get the most out of this controller. However, one benefit everyone will get out of this controller is durability and a long lifetime of use. While as a beginner you will not get the most out of it right off the bat if you are not afraid to learn it will last you long enough to figure it out. This controller is an absolute beast cheers to Thrustmaster for making such a great product.